Hunter Biden Facing Federal Investigation Over ‘Tax Affairs’
Should the investigation into Hunter Biden’s “tax affairs” continue?
What’s the story?
- In a joint statement released with the Biden-Harris transition team on Wednesday, Hunter Biden announced that he has been informed that his tax affairs are under federal investigation. Hunter Biden’s statement read:
“I learned yesterday for the first time that the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Delaware advised my legal counsel, also yesterday, that they are investigating my tax affairs. I take this matter very seriously but I am confident that a professional and objective review of these matters will demonstrate that I handled my affairs legally and appropriately, including with the benefit of professional tax advisors.”
- The Biden-Harris Transition followed up with a statement that read:
“President-elect Biden is deeply proud of his son, who has fought through difficult challenges, including the vicious personal attacks of recent months, only to emerge stronger.”
- It’s unclear what aspects of Hunter Biden’s tax affairs are under investigation, or whether this announcement may be a precursor to the appointment of a special counsel to handle the ongoing probe and deter the incoming Biden administration from halting it.
- Hunter Biden’s business dealings and the potential involvement of his father, President-elect Joe Biden, were a prominent controversy throughout the 2020 presidential election cycle.
- The story accelerated following revelations from one of Hunter Biden’s laptops, which was abandoned with a computer repairman and later seized by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in December 2019. The FBI has also heard from one of Hunter Biden’s former business associates, Tony Bobulinski, who came forward to provide testimony and documents to rebut claims that Joe Biden wasn’t involved in Hunter’s business ventures.
What were the emails about Hunter’s business dealings?
- An email sent to Hunter Biden and his business partner Devon Archer on May 12, 2014, by Burisma advisor Vadym Pozharskyi asked Biden for advice “on how you could use your influence” to send a message and “stop what we consider to be politically motivated actions”. The exchange occurred shortly after Biden joined the board of Burisma. Another email sent by Pozharskyi to Biden on April 17, 2015, read, “Dear Hunter, thank you for inviting me to DC and giving an opportunity to meet your father and spent [sic] some time together. It’s realty [sic] an honor and pleasure.”
- In addition to business dealings in Ukraine, the emails reveal a business deal involving China that Hunter pursued with his uncle James Biden which appeared to set aside an equity stake for “the big guy”, Joe Biden. The emails show the involvement of other associates named Rob Walker, James Gilliar, and Tony Bobulinski. After coverage of Hunter Biden’s business dealings was dismissed by Democrats as Russian misinformation without evidence, Bobulinski came forward with documents and audio to demonstrate his firsthand knowledge of the Bidens’ business dealings.
Who is Tony Bobulinski?
- Tony Bobulinski is a former business associate of Hunter Biden who came forward to provide firsthand testimony that Joe Biden was involved in business deals pursued by Hunter and James Biden.
- He says that he met in person with Joe Biden on two occasions when he met the three Bidens at their request in Los Angeles for a high level discussion about a $10 million business venture they were planning with Chinese energy conglomerate CEFC China Energy Co., and their own business entities, including Oneida Holdings, LLC and Sinohawk Holdings, LLC.
- Of particular note is an email sent by James Gilliar, an international business consultant involved in the CEFC-related venture with the Bidens, Bobulinski, and Rob Walker. Gilliar’s email stipulated the pay Hunter would receive as chair or vice chair of the venture. It also outlined a provisional equity distribution for partners, listing “20 H” in reference to Hunter, “10 Jim” for Jim Biden, and “10 held by H for the big guy?” Bobulinski was mentioned as the CEO of the venture, receiving a 20% equity stake as “20 TB” and claimed that “the big guy” is Joe Biden in his initial public statement:
“The reference to “the Big Guy” in the much publicized May 13, 2017 email is in fact a reference to Joe Biden. The other “JB” referenced in that email is Jim Biden, Joe’s brother. Hunter Biden called his dad ‘the Big Guy’ or ‘my Chairman,’ and frequently referenced asking him for his sign-off or advice on various potential deals that we were discussing.“
- Walker sent Bobulinski a text message on May 19, 2017, to explain that Hunter was referring to his dad as “chairman”:
“No. When he said his chairman he was talking about his dad and I think your dismissal of it maybe offended him a bit, but you didn’t know what he was talking about. Let’s let it go til the morning if we can.”
- In a text message from Gilliar on May 20, 2017, Bobulinski was told, “Don’t mention Joe being involved, it’s only when u are face to face, I know u know that but they are paranoid”. Bobulinski explained that eventually he became concerned with the business deal with the Chinese venture:
“I realized the Chinese were not really focused on a healthy financial ROI. They were looking at this as a political or influence investment. Once I realized that Hunter wanted to use the company as his personal piggy bank by just taking money out of it as soon as it came from the Chinese, I took steps to prevent that from happening.”
- None of the business documents indicate that Joe Biden had a financial interest in the company, but Bobulinski suggests that was by design. In his first public interview with Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, Bobulinski said he spoke with Jim Biden after a meeting at the Peninsula Hotel about how the Bidens are doing their business without exposing Joe to political risk:
“And I’m thinking about the Biden family, like, how are they doing this? I know Joe decided not to run in 2016, but what if he ran in the future? Aren’t they taking political risk or headline risk? And I remember looking at Jim Biden and saying, how are you guys getting away this, like, aren’t you concerned? And he looked at me and he laughed a little bit and said, plausible deniability.”
- After Bobulinski unsuccessfully tried to convince the partners to establish proper corporate governance around the venture, the deal appeared to fall through in the summer of 2017, at which point Bobulinski was left out of the deal. However, the Senate Homeland Security Committee found that CEFC provided $5 million to a company called Hudson West in August 2017, which in turn paid $4.7 million in consulting fees to Hunter Biden’s law firm over the course of a year. Bobulinski was unaware of that transaction until the committee’s report was released.
- Bobulinski, a former Navy veteran who says he held a top secret security clearance, took umbrage at claims by Democrats, including House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA), that stories about Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings were Russian disinformation. He released audio of his conversations with Walker and Gilliar, who wanted to prevent the story from gaining traction:
Walker: “I just think that if somebody comes out now and verifies the story it blows big time, that’s all.”
Gilliar: “We’ve got this situation now where it’s escalating again because somebody, allegedly one of us three, has qualified the story. Already it’s back on the front pages.”
- Bobulinski told his former business partners that if they didn’t come forward with the facts, or if Schiff didn’t publicly retract his claim, that he would go on record, to which Walker replied, “Tony, you’re just gonna bury all of us, man.”
- Bobulinski has provided electronic devices to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Senate Homeland Security Committee for their investigations into Hunter Biden’s business dealings. Federal authorities have reportedly verified the authenticity of the documents provided by Bobulinski.
- CEOs of Twitter, Facebook & Google Testify Before the Senate on ‘Big Tech’ Censorship (10/29/20)
- CEOs of Twitter & Facebook Subpoenaed Over Suppression of Reporting on Hunter Biden’s Emails (10/22/20)
- DNI Ratcliffe Says Hunter Biden’s Laptop & Emails ‘Not Part of Some Russian Disinformation Campaign’ (10/19/20)
- GOP Report: Hunter Biden’s Burisma Ties ‘Very Awkward’ for U.S. Officials Seeking to Reduce Corruption in Ukraine (9/23/20)
— Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: acaben via Wikimedia / Creative Commons)
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